Richard Joseph (Dick) Ifield




Dick's Notes Continue:

"The sea journey to Sydney took about seven weeks and we arrived in February 1948. We stayed with my parents at their home in Exeter for a few weeks, where they lived with my sister Vera and her husband and child. We then purchased the Dural property, which became the centre of my work for Lucas over the following fifteen years and then became the working premises of our family owned Company R.J. Ifield & Sons. Pty. Ltd."

"Our seventh son Philip Alan was born shortly after we moved into the cottage at Dural. The property included 89 acres of mainly virgin bushland, with streams and natural swimming pools, with precipitous hills and great variety of native flowers and shrubs, ideal for our children to roam freely, as I had done in my childhood. It included a small factory building, suitable for my needs as a drawing office, machine shop and development laboratory, with ample scope for extensions, but for the first eighteen months, I needed only a typist to type my correspondence and reports."

"The dwelling was far too small, but I planned to build a large family residence on the property and to use the cottage for housing a care taking couple. I had some temporary alternations made, to provide accommodation for our children and for a married couple, I engaged as domestic help and as future caretakers. Lucas registered the name 'Lucas Laboratories', for my work at Dural and Lucas paid all expenses relating to my work. I will discuss my work at Dural later.


His notes were as follows:

We depend to a great extent on the contributions of others, for success in any field of human endeavour, probably none more so than in the field of engineering invention, where success depends on the support of sponsors; on the enthusiasm and loyalty of all concerned with the projects, including manufacturing and sales; also on the goodwill of customers for the products. At the time of my departure from England, I had achieved my youthful ambitions, so before discussing my continued career in Australia, I will devote this chapter to acknowledging my debt to others, who contributed most to my success.

Although I had been inspired with ambitions relating to my inventive talents, from my early childhood, in pursuing my career, my first consideration was always for the welfare and happiness of my wife and children. I doubt if I would have pursued my ambitious dreams with such stubborn determination, if I had remained a bachelor; without the quiet confidence and encouragement of my wife, over our leanest years, from the day of our marriage in July 1933 to the signing of my Agreement with Rileys in December 1935. Without the spur of increasing family responsibilities, I may have been defeated by the frustration's that plagued me, until I joined the Lucas Organisation. Without the loan of money from my wife's relatives for our passage to England, I may never have made the journey which led to the achievement of my ambitions, but the individual acknowledgements in this chapter are of the more direct contributions of my engineering career.

I acknowledge that the kindly constructive criticisms of Scott Iverson were beneficial, in that these caused me to think of other means for providing a variable speed transmission, leading to my design of a hydro-static system, the pump of which began my successful career with Lucas.

Although the kindly efforts of Monty Toombs were unproductive directly, it was he who recommended that I should show my restricted ratio differential to Rileys, leading to the gaining of a retaining fee at the time of greatest financial desperation and leading to recognition of my inventive talents, without which I may never have met Irving, who introduced me to Lucas.

I owe a debt of gratitude to the brothers Frank and Leslie Freeman, for lending their car to me when I needed it; for their friendship and for their unfailing sense of humour, which kept my spirits up through many frustrating years. I acknowledge the valuable contribution of Frank, in the excellence of his draughtsmanship leading up to the sale of my pump Patents to Lucas and I acknowledge the valuable contributions made by the brothers, as my valued design and development assistants at Lucas.

As affecting my rise to success in my career, I owe most to Captain Irving, whose kindly interest in me and in my inventions , went far beyond his interest as General Manager of Bendix. If he had not been so persistent in his efforts to interest Lucas in my ideas, I may never have achieved my ambitions. I was glad for his sake that I was able to justify his confidence in me.

I owe a great deal to Oliver Lucas. In spite of the great pressures on his time, as Chairman of Lucas and of the Army Tank Development and Production Board, he always found time to take a close personal interest in my work and in my personal welfare, until his death in 1948.

I owe a great deal to Dr. Watson, who took a close personal interest in my work and in my welfare, co-operating with me in every way for the development of my ideas. This in spite of the great pressures on his time and the Company Group Chief Engineer.

I owe much to Ralph Barrington, who was always ready to help wherever help was needed and who was my close companion and confidant for all engine tests of my inventions, during the critical days of the development of the jet engines.

I owe a debt of gratitude to Tom Harris, for his unfailing loyalty, for his valuable development contributions and for taking most of the management loading from my shoulders. Whenever possible from him to do so, he protected me from all boring and unpleasant situations.

I owe a lot to Ken Brook, for his help and encouragement during the difficult period at C.A.V, where he protected my staff against a hostile management and where, unlike myself, he was able to drive the unwilling people responsible for production.

I owe a lot to Lord Hives and to Dr. Hooker of Rolls Royce, who were very pro-Ifield and who supported me against their own senior staff, when these sought to wrest design control from me. I particularly enjoyed Hive's impish sense of humour in the way he squashed opposition to me and I enjoyed Hooker's confidence, that I could instantly invent new devices on the blackboard, for whatever new problems arising.

Of others of my staff I particularly recall the support of Stan Davidson; Ted Jones; Harry Bottoms; Eugene Warne; Wally Ashmore; but where can I stop? Even the most junior members of my staff were loyal and enthusiastic assistants and I remember most of them with fondness and gratitude. An important contribution of many was their sense of humour, which helped to carry us through the difficult war years. Unfortunately they seemed to lose their sense of humour after my departure and I saw no smiling faces on my subsequent visits. Perhaps a sense of humour trickles down from the top, so that it began to expire with the death of Oliver Lucas and with my departure, followed soon afterwards with the departure of Leslie Freeman, the death of Tom Harris and Watson's retirement.

Many of my staff gained important positions, within or outside the Lucas organisation.

Tom Harris succeeded me as Chief Engineer, until his death in 1953.

Joe Righton succeeded Tom Harris as Chief Development Engineer
He then succeeded Tom Harris as Chief Engineer.
He then succeeded John Morley as General Manager.
He is now the Group Technical Director.

Leslie Freeman joined me in Australia as my Chief Designer of Lucas Laboratories.
He then became Chief Engineer and a Director of the Australian Lucas Industrial Equipment Company.
He is now a senior member of the staff of Ifield Engineering Pty Ltd

Frank Freeman rejoined the Gas Turbine Company, to take charge of a new products division of the Company, until his retirement.

Ted Jones became Chief Engineer of Lucas Rotax (Canada) until he resigned.
He then formed a successful engineering Company of his own.

Harry Bottoms became the Chief Designer of Lucas Aerospace Ltd.

Charles Bottoms succeeded Ted Jones as Chief Engineer of Lucas Rotax (Canada) until that company closed down.
He then became General Manager of one of the major factories of Girling Ltd.

Eugene Warne succeeded Owen Lawrence as Chief Performance Engineer.

Bill Huyton, Previously an excellent development engineer, is now the Technical Director of Dowty Ltd.

Dough Izons, previously and assistant designer, succeeded Joe Righton as Chief Engineer.

George Czarnecki, previously an assistant performance engineer, became Chief Performance Engineer at Lucas Rotax (Canada) until the company closed down.
He is now the Chief Engineer of DeLaval in the USA

Les Goddard, previously a laboratory assistant, became Chief Engineering Sales Representative for the Lucas Industrial Equipment Company, until his retirement from the Company.
He is now an independent Manufacturer's Representative and Ifield Engineering Pty Ltd. Is among his clients.

Mowbray, previously a draftsman is now Chief Designer at C.A.V.

John Price, previously a laboratory assistant was promoted beyond his capabilities as Chief Engineer of the Lucas Industrial Equipment Company, he was then moved sideways to an important position not demanding such engineering talents.

I was informed that others of my erstwhile staff now hold important positions in other companies and I was half jokingly accused of having trained engineers for the benefit of Lucas competitors. This is an admission that my successors did not recognise the talents of these people.


When I returned to Australia, I was asked to serve as a consultant to all the Companies in the Lucas Group. I was appointed a special duties Director of the Gas Turbine Company, which I will now refer to by its present name, Lucas Aerospace Limited. This appointment gave me authority during my visits to the Australian and Canadian Lucas Companies, but I attended Board Meetings only during my overseas visits. In order to increase my authority in Australia, I was appointed as a Director of Joseph Lucas (Australia) Limited and of Lucas Rotax (Australia) Limited. It was then necessary for me to meet and correspond with the senior executives of many Companies in the Lucas Group.

There were many changes among the Lucas senior executives, mainly resulting from deaths and retirements and there were major changes at C.A.V., to replace those whose loyalty was to their old masters, the German Bosch Company. These changes continued and towards the end of my service with Lucas, I was dealing with people previously unknown to me. Those with whom I was mainly concerned were as follows:

Joseph Lucas Industries Limited (The Holding Company)

Chairman- Oliver Lucas died in harness in 1948 and was replaced by -
Sir Bertram Waring who retired in 1969 and was replaced by -
Sir Kenneth Corley, who has since been replaced by Sir Bernard Scott.

Managing Director - Fred Garner who retired in 1969 and has not been replaced.

Group Chief Engineer - Dr Watson who retired in 1958 and was replaced by Dr Clarke who died about 1967 and was replaced by Ewen McEwen.

Girling Limited

General Manager - Michael Kendal

Chief Engineer - Dr Wilson

C.A.V. Limited

General Manager - Bernard Scott

Chief Engineer - Dr Alan Austin

Chief Designer - Mowbray

All other companies, with whom I was concerned as a consultant, became subsidiaries of Lucas Aerospace Limited. I will name the senior officers with whom I was concerned, but as these retired they were not replaced, executive duties were taken over by those at the headquarters of Lucas Aerospace. When Lucas Aerospace took over other Companies, their general managers were either dismissed, or kept on as advisers only; this applied to Keelavite and to several other such Companies I visited, such as Claudel Hobson, Integral Gear Pumps and English Electric.

Lucas Aerospace Limited Headquarters at Shaftmoor Lane

General Manager - John Morley, retired about 1968 and replaced by

Joe Righton whose replacement is unknown to me.

Chief Engineer - Tom Harris died in harness in 1963 and replaced by Joe Righton who on promotion was replaced by Doug Izons.

Chief Designer -Harry Bottoms

Chief of Special Products Division - Frank Freeman, retired and not replaced.

Chief Performance Engineer - Owen Lawrence, replaced on resignation by Eugene Warne.


General Manager - Eric Earnshaw, died about 1976 and not replaced.

Chief Engineer - Ray Woodall, retired about 1958 and replaced by Jack Rea.

Lucas Rotax (Canada)

General Manager - A forgotten American who was replaced by Ron Paget until the factory closed down

Chief Engineer - Ted Jones, who resigned and was replaced by Charles Bottoms until the factory closed down.

Chief Performance Engineer - George Czarnecki until the factory closed down.

Lucas Industrial Equipment Limited

General Manager - Skinner at Marsden Green, replaced for Liverpool by Ron Paget after closure of the Toronto factory.

Chief Engineer - John Price until promoted sideways and replaced by Dr. Bert Clarke.

Lucas Rotax (Australia)

General Manager - A Harrison, until company moved to Sydney, replaced by Bob Bailey.

Chief Engineer - Joe Webb, remained in Melbourne and was not replaced.

Lucas Industrial Equipment (Australia)

General Manager - Bob Bailey.

Chief Engineer - Leslie Freeman.

When Lucas Rotax moved from Melbourne to Sydney, it was absurd for me to attend meetings in Melbourne, so I then resigned from the Board of Joseph Lucas (Australia) Limited, but I met John Kirkhope (the Australian Chairman) and Eric Potter (the Australian Chief Executive) at Lucas Rotax Board Meetings.

When our family owned Company, R.J. Ifield & Sons Pty Ltd. Was formed, I exercised prudence in resigning from the Board of Lucas Rotax (Australia), but I remained as a Director of Lucas Aerospace until my resignation from the Company. I was of little value to the company as a Director, but I was informed that Rolls Royce sough frequent assurance that I was a director of the Company. This became less important after the death of Lord Hives and when Dr. Hooker left Rolls Royce to join the Bristol Aeroplane Company.


As recommended by Oliver Lucas, I gave a series of Lectures soon after my return to Sydney, beginning with an unwritten lecture to the Melbourne Branch of the Institution of Automotive and Aeronautical Engineers (I.A.A.E.) at the request of Joe Webb. I followed this up by a prepared lecture in three parts, delivered at consecutive meetings of the Sydney Branches of the I.A.A.E., the Royal Aeronautical Society (R. Ae. S.) and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (I. Mech. E). Of these institutions, only the I.A.A.E. publish important papers in a Journal, as they did for my lectures. The other two Institutions have only a small Australian Membership and they publish only bulletins giving notice of activities to their members. My three written papers were:
A - Aero Gas Turbine Engines.
B - Combustion Systems and Burners for Aero Gas Turbine Engines.
C - Fuel and Control Systems for Aero Gas Turbine Engines.

There were record attendances at all of this series of lectures, which all three Institutes voted to be the most important and best presented lectures for many years. Following the death of Oliver Lucas, my plans for creating a design and development service for Australian industry had to be abandoned and I lost interest in giving lectures; however I honoured my promise to give a paper on my differential and I responded to a request from Dr Watson to give a paper on the development of my fuel pump. During the 1960 to 70 decade, I gave three lectures on the development of hydro-static transmissions, in the hope that this would arouse such interest that the project would be supported. These other papers given were as follows, some were joint meetings of the I. Mech. E. and the Institution of Engineers, Australia (I. E. Aust.).

I. Mech. E.................28/06/50.................Differential Transmissions for Road Vehicles
I. Mech. E/R. Ae. S.....24/10/51.................Development of the Lucas High Pressure Pump.
I. Mech. E/I. E. Aust...20/07/62.................Hydro-Static Power Transmission
I. Mech. E/I. E. Aust...21/06/67.................Hydro-Static Variable Speed Transmission.
I. E. Aust..................1969-Jubilee Conf.....The case for Vehicle Four Wheel Drive Hydro-Static

All these lectures were well attended and well received. The transmission lectures aroused a great deal of interest, but this did not result in contracts.

I was honoured by the R. Ae. S. by being appointed the Australian President for a term and following my 1967 lecture to the I. E. Aust., I was invited to become a Fellow of the Institute, after which I was a Fellow of the two most respected engineering Institutions in Britain and the most respected engineering Institution in Australia. I am registered as a Chartered Engineer and am entitled to the following letters after my name:

C. Eng.; F. R. Ae. S; F. I. Mech. E.; F. I. E. Aust.


Even at Exeter I began writing reports about ideas I had evolved during the sea voyage. Apart from giving lectures and weighing up the potentialities of my proposal for my activities in Australia, for the first eighteen months I devoted my time to reviewing the requirements for the new breed of axial compressor engines and to other projects of interest to the Lucas Group. I will later discuss the major projects with which I was concerned over the following years. In this chapter, I will discuss the factors affecting my career in Australia.

During my first year in Australia, Oliver Lucas died and was replaced as Chairman by Bertram Waring (later Sir Bertram). He visited Dural at the end of that year and said that the Company was uninterested in my proposal for operation in Australia and that the Lucas Group would make use of all my inventions. He said that I could build up whatever staff and development facilities I needed, operating under the name 'Lucas Laboratories', which would be registered. He said that I must give first priority to the development of improved fuel systems for gas turbine engines; second priority to the development of my hydro-static transmission proposals and third priority to the development of improved equipment for other Companies in the Lucas Group.

He said I must visit the Gas Turbine Equipment Company in England, at least at two yearly intervals, beginning in the following year (1949) I could be accompanied by my wife at Company expenses for each second visit. This arrangement suited me, particularly since I wanted the opportunity to develop the hydro-static transmission system under my direct control, also it gave me the freedom to develop other inventions, free of problems associated with productions and commercialism. After I had completed the transmission developments, I believed that I would so saturate the Lucas Companies with new ideas, that they would allow me to expand my activities to the problems of industry general.

At that time I had a girl to type my letters, reports and lectures and at my own expense I had employed a married couple as domestic helps and for odd jobs on the premises. They were satisfactory in their work, although like most men of that class, the man was drunk after his days off and his wife and child left him. I learned later that he gave her nothing from the money I paid him, to support her or his child. I then began to realise a serious shortcoming of living there. We were far from our friends and relatives and at some distance from neighbours, so that for my first overseas journey, I would have to leave my wife and children in the doubtful care of the odd job man. This was a source of justified worry to me during my absence and I determined to make other arrangements in future.

During my 1949 overseas visit, it was agreed that my trusted friend Leslie Freeman would join me as my first assistant. It was necessary for us to provide additional accommodation for Leslie, when he arrived towards the end of 1949, but his presence eliminated my concern about being absent from home. The odd job man left shortly afterwards and I found that it was not necessary to replace him.

Another problem then emerged. Some of our sons had advanced to high schools and this presented a problem in transportation. Because of this and other circumstances, I abandoned my ideas on building our future home on the property and I decided to sell the property to Lucas and to buy another house in a more suitable area. Lucas agreed to my selling terms during my 1951 overseas visit and I bought our present home in Beecroft; we moved there in September of that same year.

I had paid 4,500 pounds for the building and improvements on the crown land at Dural and I converted this to freehold at a cost of only 150 pounds. I sold the property at cost, including the cost of improvements I had made, on condition that Lucas would sell it back to me at the same price, plus the cost of any improvements they made, if they decided to close the laboratory, or to change its location.

I paid 8,750 pounds for the Beecroft property. During the following years, we spent a great deal of time and money in improving the property to suit our needs and its present market value is about $175,000.

When we moved from Dural, the cottage was rented at a low price to a young couple, on condition that they provided food and accommodation to Leslie Freeman at a reasonable charge to him. Later, Leslie married and rented the cottage as his home, until Lucas closed the laboratory, It then served as a temporary home for my sons as they married. It is now used as a caretaker's cottage.

During the three years 1950 to 1952, I engaged Edna Allshorn as the Company Secretary, Max Joscelyne as my machine shop craftsman, also my son John and John Betts as junior laboratory assistants. We installed some simple machine tools and test equipment, to meet our needs at that time. We also employed a labourer mainly as a cleaner. Over the following years, we equipped the machine ship with modern tool room lathes, milling machines and a grinding machine; we made up comprehensive testing equipment and provided drawing office equipment for increased staff.

Leslie Freeman became my chief designer, with about four drawing office assistants. Max Joscelyne became chief of the machine shop with about four assistants and my son John became Chief Development Engineer, with about five assistants. By 1960, the total staff at Lucas Laboratories was about 25 people; by that time our major project was the development of the hydro-static transmission, including the manufacture of three transmissions for road tests and demonstrations. I will discuss these developments and others in later chapters.

As I had expected, Lucas were unable to absorb my outflow of new inventions and I realised that the future of Lucas Laboratories depended on the success of our transmission developments. If this was successful, the laboratory would be required for a few more years. To complete the development for production, otherwise the laboratory would be closed down. I hoped to interest Lucas in a joint venture, where I would pay half of the capital cost at Dural and would operate under the name R.J. Ifield & Co. Pty Ltd., not only for the direct benefit of Lucas, but as a practical consulting and development service in industry generally, in accordance with my original ideas.

In preparation for this, I began training two more of my sons, Bob & Colin, as development engineers. I was aware of the strict company ruling, that close relatives must not be employed in this way, but it was essential for my plans. Lucas made no objections about this to me, but when they rejected my partnership proposal, this may have affected their decision to close the laboratory down, when the transmission developments were rejected, instead of allowing it to continue with a reduced staff. I have no regrets about this.

The decade following our return to Australia was one during which I mourned the deaths of many of my dearest friends, beginning with the deaths of Oliver Lucas in 1948 and culminating with the death of our youngest son Philip, in a car accident, which resulted in serious injuries to my wife and to myself. About six months previously my son John had been seriously injured in a car accident, which had cost the life of our universally loved draughtslady, who had been my personal assistant in the preparation of my drawings. These disturbing events upset me emotionally and diminished my powers for intelligent though from mid 1957 to about the end of 1958.

I put forward my proposal to operate the laboratory as a Lucas/Ifield partnership, in 1961. This was rejected and I was asked to close the laboratory down at the end of 1962. I was offered a position as Technical Director of the Lucas Group, if I returned to England and I gave this serious consideration because, with my family responsibilities, I would not have been able to purchase the property and plant at Dural and to await the development of a demand for its services, without the income I received from Lucas.

At that time, one of my sons (Frank) was pursuing his ambitions in England, but several of my other sons stated that if we moved to England, they would remain in Australia. It seemed to me that if we stayed in Australia, Frank would visit us occasionally but if we moved to England we may never see our other sons again until my retirement. I decided to remain in Australia, even if this meant finding employment with another Company, but Lucas then asked me to serve as a consultant to the Lucas Group, with no change in my salary, but making annual overseas visits. I agreed to this.

Those of my sons who were employed at Lucas Laboratories said they wished to continue working in that type of employment. I therefore offered to purchase land and buildings at the price I had sold them to Lucas, plus and agreed sum for improvements made by Lucas, and to purchase the Lucas Laboratories plant and equipment at valuation. In fact, Lucas accepted the marked down book values. We registered the Company as R.J. Ifield & Sons Pty. Ltd., which took over the previous assets of Lucas Laboratories and began operation in February 1963.

I continued to operate from my office at Dural for several years. Lucas paid a rental fee for my office, plus a charge for secretarial and other services. The name Lucas Laboratories was kept alive for my trading use, until my resignation from Lucas in 1970. During the early years of its operation R.J. Ifield. & Sons benefited from several design and development contracts for Lucas and from the manufacture of pumps and motors, on Lucas orders from England and from their Industrial Equipment Company in Sydney.

In 1970, I resign from Lucas to take an executive position as Director of Engineering of R.J. IFIELD & Sons, but our Company was too small to deal with the developing and marketing of new inventions and in attempting to do so, the Company suffered financial losses. I therefore retired from active service in my career on a full time basis, in 1974. Apart from that four year period of service with the Company, I have served only as the non-executive Chairman since its foundation and the history of the growth of the Company should be recorded by my sons.

During my final years of service with Lucas, I employed a secretary, a designer and a lady tracer at office premises I provided at Beecroft, which I operated as Lucas Laboratories. Later I operated from these offices on behalf of R.J. IFIELD & Sons. I continue to use my private office for my present needs. The large office is used for Company Board Meetings and other meetings; also as a sports room and occasional party dining room.

Under separate headings, I will discuss the most important contributions of our laboratory to the control systems for jet engines and also our experiences in the development of hydro-static transmissions from road vehicles, but I have made many other inventive contributions to the Lucas Group of Companies. In many cases it was not necessary to prove the ideas in Australia and these ideas were included in new designs by the Companies concerned.

In the other invention category, the work that most pleased me was carried out against an order from Girling, to establish the relationship between the sideways and tangential friction coefficients at a partly skidding tyre. This was determined at low cost by the use of a simple specially made test device and from the tests, I established a previously unknown law of rolling and sliding friction. I stated this law as follows: -

'Where sliding takes place in two directions simultaneously, the frictional resistance to sliding in any one direction is in the same proportion to the total friction resistance as is the sliding velocity in that direction to the total sliding velocity'.

With Girling permission, I disclosed this law at the 1969 Jubilee Conference of the Institution of Engineers, Australia.


Just prior to leaving England, Rolls Royce had asked me to give consideration to a new form of control system for the new breed of axial compressor engines; to provide the maximum rate of acceleration without any danger of stalling. They claimed that what was needed was a jet pipe temperature limitation varying as a function of engine RPM.

During my first year at Dural, I was able to devote much of my thoughts to reviewing the control system requirements and I proposed two alternative systems. I referred to one of these as a Proportional Flow Control (P.F.C.) and I referred to the other as a Combined Acceleration and Steady Running Control (C.A.S.C.).

The P.F.C. system provided a by-pass flow directly proportional to the main flow, which could therefore be controlled or limited, by controlling or limiting the by-pass flow to the desired function of the compressor intake pressure P1 for steady running control, or by a jet pipe temperature responsive device for acceleration control.

There is a response delay in any temperature responsive device and this must be allowed for in any acceleration control depending on a temperature responsive signal, so I recommended my alternative C.A.S.C. system, which limited the jet pipe temperature T4 accurately and with instantaneous response, by employing the engine intake and delivery pressures PI and P2 and a signal of engine speed N.

Another problem was that a sudden closing of the pilot's control sometimes resulted in 'flame out', particularly from maximum power at high altitudes and my C.A.S.C. system was adaptable to provide the maximum deceleration free from flame out, the maximum acceleration free from stall and the desired steady running control in response to the setting of the pilot's control lever.

For gas turbine engines, all gas pressure ratios, gas temperature ratios, air mass flows, thrusts and fuel flow (F) requirements are unique functions of N/T1. The engine makers provided curves of P2/P1, T4/T1 and F/P1T1 all against N/T1, for steady speeds; for maximum stall free acceleration and for deceleration with no danger of flame out. The performance engineers regarded these unique functions as a bible, not to be interpreted in any other way, but I was not limited by mathematical teachings.

Since all the curves were a function of N/T1, they were functions of one another. I played tunes on the curves, multiplying, dividing, squaring, adding one to the other, or whatever was necessary to eliminate the temperature terms, until I had unique curves of F proportional to N(P2 + AP1) for both maximum acceleration and deceleration and F proportional to j (P2 + A P1) for steady requirements, where j is the pilot's control setting and A is a constant for any given engine.

This led to arguments with Lawrence extending over the following seven years, involving much correspondence and many reports in support of my proposals.

Lucas demanded an immediate visit by me, to advise them on how to remedy the P.F.C. instability. I explained the cause and remedy in letters, but this was not accepted. Within one hour of my arrival at Shaftmoor Lane, I demonstrated the effectiveness of the remedy I had recommended. John Morley then called Tom Harris and Joe Righton into his office and told them that I had made them look 'bloody fools'. It was Joe Righton who had argued against my recommendation; Tom had been unwise in depending on what Joe had said, but I was sorry that he was embarrassed in that way; particularly so when he died later in that year.

In production, the P.F.C was adapted for trimming to the desired function of

T4 as an acceleration control and it was renamed a Range Temperature Control (R.T.C.). It became the standard control system for several production engines.

In 1954, serious acceleration stalling problems were being experienced on three new engines, the Armstrong Siddeley 'Sapphire', the Rolls Royce 'Avon' RA7 and the Metropolitan Vickers F2/4. I showed curves of the C.A.S.C control system for all these engines and Lawrence agreed that if the system would meet the requirements of any of these engines, it would probably meet the requirements of all. We had made up and proved a unit on rig tests and I was asked to calibrate it for the Sapphire engine then on test, for demonstration tests during my visit in August/September of that year. About a week before my departure I was asked to change the calibration to suit the more difficult RA7 engine. This change was made.

On engine test, the C.A.S.C. gave the most rapid stall free acceleration that had ever been achieved from that engine and the unit was left in England for continued testing. It was reported that whereas the system had been stable with the face type servo valve I had employed, it was unstable when converted to kinetic servo valves. It seemed that the development engineers had not learned from my teachings relating to the R.T.C. A new C.A.S.C. unit was made and developed at Dural, using the kinetic servo system and the double D size pumps employed for the latest engines. The stability problems were remedied and Leslie Freeman took it for engine tests, during his overseas visit in 1955.

The 1955 demonstrations of the C.A.S.C. eliminated all arguments. As usual, Righton and Lawrence claimed that I had been 'very lucky' and Lawrence issued a lengthy report, explaining in complicated mathematics why the system worked so well. I noticed without comment, that in later years, Lawrence adopted my methods for determining the calibration requirements for the C.A.S.C. when it was produced for later engines. In its latest form, as applied to the most modern engines, it is combined with the mechanical speed governor and it has been re-named 'Mech. C.A.S.C.'.

Lucas and all others concerned were quite satisfied with my pump, with the R.T.C. control system for some engines and with the C.A.S.C. system for all modern large engines, so from 1955 onwards, the Gas Turbine Equipment Company wanted no new developments from me. During my visits, I was asked for ideas on various matters, sometimes requiring studies with full reports describing my proposals, but not requiring development work at Dural.

After the laboratory closed down, I designed a small high efficiency pump for the TSR2 fighter aeroplane and a prototype was made by R.J. Ifield & Sons for Lucas Aerospace.

In 1967, I produced two simple and elegant answers to two Lucas Aerospace problems. One was a means for determining absolute pressures from pressure differences, without requiring evacuated capsules. The other was a means for obtaining rapid response gas temperature signals. These were received with technical interest, but I resigned from the Company, before learning whether or not these ideas were developed and employed for their purpose.


Our work on hydrostatic transmissions began with the design and manufacture of a small transmission unit employing C size fuel pumps as the variable displacement pump and motor. We soon found these were far too noisy in operation for use as vehicle transmissions; the motor static torque efficiency was far too poor; the compressibility losses were unacceptably great at high pressures and small pump displacements; the leakage losses at high pressures were too great and if highly viscous oil was employed to reduce these losses, the mechanical efficiency losses became excessive at high speeds.

Although these units were quite unacceptable for my purpose, they were useful in that exhaustive tests on them determined the design requirements for quiet high efficiency operation. As a result of these tests, I concluded that, pumps of that configuration could be designed for quiet high efficiency operation, but the poor static torque conversion efficiencies as motors was inherent to the design.

I believed that the most attractive scheme was to employ a separate motor for each driven road wheel, piped to an engine driven variable displacement pump and employing a flow divider to prevent excessive wheel spin on badly surfaced tracks. This would eliminate the differential gearing, the crown wheel and pinion and the propeller shaft, thereby permitting a lower flat floor for the rear seat passengers.

I designed a high pressure fixed displacement vane motor, for quiet high efficiency operation and this was made for development. The tests confirmed my claims for quiet high efficiency operation; in fact the static torque conversion efficiency was so great that it was necessary to observe great care in the reading of very accurate instruments, to detect any mechanical efficiency losses. A unit sent to Shaftmoor Lane for evaluation was recorded as having a static and low speed conversion efficiency of 99% plus or minus 1%, because in fact their tests indicated an efficiency slightly in excess of 100%.

Lucas rejected the separate motor scheme, claiming that only a complete gear box replacement scheme would be acceptable for production. In any case, I preferred to employ variable displacement motors as a means for reducing the pump displacement requirements and to maintain moderately high pressures, under the overdrive conditions, whether or not separate motors to each driven road wheel were ultimately used. Armed with all the information obtained from tests, in 1955, I designed the forerunner of the present Ifield high efficiency pump and motor designs.

I was asked to base our developments on the requirements of a Rover 90 motor car, one of which was purchased for road tests and development of transmissions.

The Rover Company provided a road resistance curve and curves of engine torque for various increments of throttle openings, against engine RPM and they specified what they considered to be the optimum control line of engine torque against engine RPM.

The first experimental transmission based on the new pump and motor design gave a promising performance at steady speeds, but there were several problems associated with high frictional resistance to the movements of the port blocks for displacement control. This was overcome by a re-design, employing hydrostatic balance techniques at the port block transfer ports. Several variable displacement pumps of this design were made for development as separate units and some were sent to Shaftmoor Lane for their evaluation of our progress. These units were highly satisfactory.

In 1959, I was asked to curtail the development and to prepare three transmissions, one as a spare; one for road test and development in Australia; the other for demonstrations and evaluation by the M.I.R.A. in England, all by mid 1961. Waring said that the development must be quickly finalised, because the Company had spent well over I,000,000 to that time, with little promise of success. In fact about 75% of the money spent had been on a competitive system developed in England against my advice and this had proved to be a complete failure.

The transmission was designed and the three units were made as quickly as possible, but there was little time for development in road tests and the unit dispatched to England had been bench tested only. At that stage of development, there were several faults with the transmission:-

1 - It was found that the unit sent to England had porous castings, resulting in leakage of oil from the casings. The need for frequent topping up the oil level was one of the main objections raised.

2 - The control system did not provide tractive effort control at low vehicle speeds; this was a later development. Because of this, it was difficult to avoid what were referred to as 'kangaroo starts', from rest.

3 - The system included a full flow reversing valve between the pump and motor and the pressure drops through this valve were excessive at high flow rates. This resulted in a serious loss of efficiency at high road speeds and the test drivers complained of a loss of power together with increased fuel consumption under those conditions.

4 - From test experience at Dural, we were aware that the transfer port seals had a short life, but I thought that they would survive long enough for the road tests, until I learned that these included 20,000 miles of driving under a variety of different conditions. The drivers reported. a marked reduction in performance and fuel economy with increasing driving distance and this was almost certainly due to increasing leakages at the transfer port seals.

As first tested, in comparison with a standard Rover 90 car, the system showed considerable fuel economies at steady speeds below about 70 mph, with a 40% gain in mpg at about 40 mph. Because of the losses through the reversing valve, the standard car was more economical on fuel at speeds above about 75 mph. When driving on roads, the system showed an improvement of 5% in mpg on hilly roads requiring maximum motor displacement, with high flow rates, accompanied by high pressure drop losses through the reversing valves, to 12% on open roads, where greater use would have been made of the high overdrive speed ratios. The average improvement in mpg under various road conditions was 10%.

In spite of the shortcomings at that time, the M.I.R.A. test drivers were favourably impressed with the transmission at that stage of its development. Lucas agreed that the shortcomings could easily be remedied and they accepted my estimate that the average improvement in fuel economy could be increased to about 15%, by replacing the reversing valves with a simple reversing gear box; by employing a lower viscosity fluid such as diesel fuel and by controlling the engine for lowest specific consumption at the various power demands, instead of on the torque curve which had been recommended.

Lucas claimed that the major factors affecting possible sales, were the user advantages against production costs and that improved fuel economy was relatively unimportant. They exampled the hydro-kinetic automatic transmissions, which were popular because they simplified driving at little extra cost, even though this was accompanied by a fuel consumption penalty. They carried out a production cost exercise, in comparison with the standard synchro-mesh transmission, based on a production rate of 50,000 transmissions per year. They claimed that the production cost of 124 per transmission was about three times that for the synchro-mesh transmission and that this was unacceptably high.

Rover and Jaguar agreed to such a cost penalty for such a transmission, but the cost for the reduced production rate increased beyond that they were willing to pay. Rolls Royce said they would pay much more for such a transmission, but not the large increase for their small production requirements. We had a similar reaction in Australia. We demonstrated the transmission to Chamberlain Industries, fitted to one of their tractors; they were delighted with the performance, but a cost estimate based on their production quantities was beyond the price they could pay.

Following this, I was asked to wind the project down and to close the laboratory by the end of 1962. During the winding down period, we developed a tractive effort control linked to the accelerator pedal, giving progressive control when starting and accelerating from rest. On the test rig, we determined the pressure drop losses through the reversing valves and this confirmed that the loss in power and fuel economy at high speeds were due to these losses. We also proved that higher efficiencies were obtainable by the use of diesel fuel instead of oil, as the transmission medium.

R. J. Ifield & Sons continued to produce the high efficiency motors, but only in small numbers to meet special needs demanding efficiencies beyond the capacity of commercially available motors. This applied to some pit trucks which were driven by hydraulic motors at the wheels; these would not climb the specified 1 : 4 gradient until they were fitted with our motors. It applied to the I.K.A.R.A. missile loaders, where only our motors would provide the specified minimum torque conversion efficiency of 95%. It also applied to some automatic miners, which failed to keep the miners against the coal face, when the seam turned uphill, until they were fitted with our motors.

In recent years, our Company has greatly reduced the production costs of the high efficiency pumps, motors and the automatic control system necessary for road vehicle transmissions. There is now much greater interest in conserving liquid fuels and the high price of liquid fuels has caused people to be more interested in fuel economies, such that they are prepared to pay extra first costs for savings in fuel costs. This is evident from the increasing conversions at high costs from liquid fuels to natural gas.

All but two Lucas owned Patents relating to the Ifield pumps and motors are time expired. These two are dated August 1967 and they are not infringed by the modern Ifield designs. The Patented features of the new Ifield high efficiency designs include a specially developed journal slipper; a simplified means for transferring the fluid to and from the moveable port block and the housing; a greatly simplified control system base on the fact that the hydrostatic pressure at the journal slipper is proportional to the driving torque and an improved port face design for extended life.

Some of these new features have permitted the units to be operated at maximum duties on 5/95 water based fluids. The journal slipper has resulted in a reduction in the outside diameter of the units and reduced the mechanical efficiency losses at high speeds, compared with the earlier roller bearing. The simplified flow transfer scheme has greatly reduced production costs, has eliminated the troublesome transfer port seals and has resulted in noise reduction. The improved port face design has provided increased service life.

I am hopeful that the Company can find a sponsor, to cover the cost of a new transmission unit for application to road vehicles and that the transmission will be adopted in production for this purpose in my lifetime.

I estimate that about 250 Provisional Patents have been taken out on my ideas and 112 of these have been accepted as world wide Patented Inventions. Many of these inventions have been produced, others were Patented as protection against competition. The total cost of maintaining these Patents would be the equivalent to nearly $I,000,000 at present day costs, but they have been very profitable to Lucas, not only in protecting them against competition, but their costs have been recovered many times over from Licence Fees and Royalties. I hope that our Company will achieve a similar degree of success from their Patents.

All but 31 complete Patents taken out on my inventions are now time expired and several of my early inventions are now in common usage. Several of my early inventions, which were not disclosed, could still be of value; these include my harmonic crankshaft; my ball bearing transmission; my improved ideas for the steering of track laying vehicles; my high efficiency engine proposals and my ejector system for fixed displacement pumps, simulating variable displacement performances. There were also many valuable ideas Patented by Lucas, but not actually produced.


By the time I left England, I had climbed the first mountain of my ambitions.

I did not succeed in climbing the second mountain of my ambitions in Australia, in creating a practical advisory and development service for Australian industry, but I have contributed to the creation and growth of our family owned Company, which is developing into such an organisation. Now that my sons have earned an excellent reputation as advisers and development engineers, I am advocating the sale of that division of the Company dealing with overhaul. services, so that they will have the time and financial backing necessary to concentrate their efforts on the more rewarding consulting aspects of their work. I may yet see the fruition of my ambitions, through the efforts of my sons.

We did not succeed in developing a hydrostatic transmission acceptable for production, but we may yet succeed in doing so, with the aid of financial sponsorship. It was one of my ambitions when I first went to England, to develop an automatic variable speed transmission for motor cars; it is still one of my ambitions 45 years later. Another of my ambitions at that time was to develop more highly efficient petrol engines, based on my ideas. I had no opportunity to do this, but in recent years I have presented my ideas in a technical paper, which has aroused some interest and perhaps this may be developed in my lifetime.

By far the greatest expenditure of Lucas Laboratories was on the development of the hydrostatic transmission, yet I was informed that the whole of my expenditure in Australia was justified by the success of my R.T.C. and C.A.S.C. control systems for jet engines and there have been other developments, designs and proposals I have made, which have benefited Lucas Group Companies.

As was the case in England, I gained the enthusiasm and loyal support of my assistants in Australia. I particularly acknowledge the efforts of those who were leaders in their sections.

Leslie Freeman - Who was a valued assistant throughout my work for Lucas in England and was my Chief Designer at Lucas Laboratories. His design contributions were invaluable to me.

Edna Allshorn - Who was my second assistant at Dural. As the Company Secretary, she efficiently bossed everyone, including myself. When the laboratory closed down, she served R. J. Ifield & Sons equally well until her retirement.

John Ifield - Who joined my staff in 1952 as a junior laboratory assistant and became my valued Chief Development Engineer. Apart from an absence of several months in 1957, he remained in that position until the closing of the Laboratory. He then played a major part, as an Executive Director, in establishing our family owned Company.

Max Joscelyne - Who joined my staff in 1952 and became Chief of the Experimental Machine shop. A true craftsman whose excellent work contributed greatly to whatever successes we achieved.

My sons Bob and Colin served only for a relatively short period at Lucas Laboratories, but together with my son David, they have contributed to a great extent to the growth of our family owned Company, of which they are Executive Directors.

Des Lamont was another who began at Lucas Laboratories as a junior Laboratory Assistant and who now holds an important position with Ifield Engineering Pty. Ltd. He learned a great deal through his work with me and added to his knowledge in important positions with other Companies later.

I have grateful memories of Janet and Margaret Cavanough. Margaret succeeded Janet as the drawing office lady tracer and as my personal draughtslady, in preparing drawings illustrating my new ideas, for my reports. Both were perfectionists in their work and both brightened the office with their smiles. Janet had the strange power of reading my thoughts, so that with little verbal guidance she was able to draw my ideas exactly as I would have done. Her death was a great shock to me and to all who knew her.


The grim reaper had been kind to me during the first 39 years of my life; he had claimed the lives of some barely remembered relatives and acquaintances, but in spite of the war and the bombing raids on England, I had mourned the death, in 1942, of my brother Milton alone; my family was intact and there had been no casualties among my professional friends and colleagues.

From 1948, the year of my arrival in Australia, there has been a high casualty rate among my closest blood relatives and among my professional colleagues, many of whom were among my dearest friends. A high casualty rate is expected among ageing people, but of the 22 people in this category, who have died since 1948, only three (my father, Dr. Ernest Watson and Sir Bertram Waring) were over 70 years old at the tine of their deaths.

1948 - 1955. The high casualty rate began with the death of my most powerful advocate, Oliver Lucas, in 1948. He was followed by Captain Jack Irving, to whom I owed most for my success in my career; then by Stan Davidson, my Production Manager at Shaftmoor Lane; by Tom Harris, my loyal dear friend who had taken many onerous duties from my shoulders.

1956 - 1960. This period began with the death of my father, followed by my mother in the following year. Janet Cavanough was killed in a car accident in 1957 my youngest son Philip was killed in a car accident at the end of that year. This very distressing period ended with the death of my brother Johnnie.

1961 - 1965. This period began with the death of Ken Brook, our dear friend at C.A.V. He was followed by Lord Hives, my powerful advocate at Rolls Royce and by Cyril Lombard, my co-operative colleague as Chief Designer of engines at Rovers and at Rolls Royce.

1966 - 1970. This period began with the deaths of Frazer Evans, Dennis Lee and Bill Swift all in the same year and the period ended with the death of Dr. Stanley Clarke, who had been responsible for the development of the gas turbine engine combustion system and with whom I had collaborated in my work.

1971 - l975. This period began with the death of John Morley, followed by the deaths of Dr. Watson and Sir Bertram Waring, all of whom had become dear friends. I owe a great deal to Dr. Watson for the success of my career in England and I owe a lot to Sir Bertram, for his support after my return to Australia.

1976 - 1980. This period began with the death of Eric Earnshaw, my most powerful advocate at Rotax, followed by the death of my brother Geoffrey and by the death of Dr. Alan Austin, with whom I co-operated at C.A.V., from about 1960 until my resignation from Lucas.

In addition to my fond memories of all these people, in matters affecting my professional career, I have reason to be particularly grateful to Oliver Lucas, Captain Irving, Tom Harris, Ken Brook, Lord Hives, Sir Bertram Waring and Dr. Watson. In fact of all the people with whom I was associated in my career, there are only three, living or dead, for whom I have no kind thoughts.


Although I arrived in Sydney on 4/2/1948, my first 18 months were concerned with technical reviews for which I required only a typist. The growth of the laboratory commenced when Leslie Freeman joined me an 18/11/49 as my design assistant. The following shows the laboratory staff engagements in the various sections, until the laboratory was closed on 14/12/1962.

L. B. Freeman 18/11/49 to 1/l/62 Chief designer, left to join Lucas Rotax

J. Betts 28/8/50 to 1/7/56 Laboratory assistant left of own accord 20/4/59 to closure. Rejoined as assistant to L. B. Freeman.

Joy Ayrton 9/9/51 to 13/3/53. Domestic caretaker until L. B. Freeman's marriage.

E. Allshorn 20/8/51 to closure Company secretary.

K. J. Ifield 19/5/52 to closure Laboratory assistant. Left for a few month in 1956 and rejoined as chief laboratory assistant until closure.

M. Joscelyne 25/8/52 to 30/11/62 Machinist, became chief of machine shop.

R. Gow 2/10/53 to 2/3/56 Laboratory assistant

E. Freeman 3/11/53 to 16/11/56 Domestic caretaker replacing Joy Ayrton

E. Owen 7/4/54 to 31/7/55 Machinist

R. J. (Jim) Ifield 9/4/54 to 1/7/54 Labourer

J. Van Krieson 16/4/54 to 23/12/55 Apprentice machinist

R. Quodling 20/2/55 to 12/7/57 Laboratory assistant

A. Purvis 9/9/55 to 27/l/56 Domestic caretaker

F. Staples 13/l/56 to 20/l/56 Labourer

N. Summerfield 30/l/56 to 19/7/57 Labourer

M. Fritsch 27/2/56 to closure Machinist

D. Lamont 16/4/56 to 30/11/62 Laboratory assistant

W. Sindel 24/4/56 to 30/6/58 Laboratory assistant 17/11/58 to 10/3/62 Rejoined as fitter

W. Mullay 3/5/56 to 12/12/56 Labourer 5/7/57 to closure Rejoined as maintenance man.

J. Cavanaugh 9/9/56 to 4/7/57 Lady tracer, service terminated by death

C. Frost 21/11/56 to 21/3/58 Laboratory assistant

S. Pearce 28/l/57 to 17/0/62 Draftsman

J. Peberty 1/2/57 to closure Apprentice machinist

P. Bonnard 24/6/57 to 24/4/58 Temporary lady tracer.

M. Cavanaugh 5/5/58 to closure Lady tracer.

A. Revel 7/7/58 to 23/12/60 Laboratory assistant

G. Smith 25/7/58 to 31/10/58 Labourer.

F. Percy 18/8/58 to closure Laboratory assistant

G. Perry 18/8/58 to closure Laboratory assistant

D. Green 18/8/58 to 27/2/59 Laboratory assistant

K. Wilkins 13/10/58 to 15/i/60 Machinist

K. Kramer 30/10/58 to 13/5/60 Labourer

W. R. Ifield 17/11/58 to closure Drawing office and laboratory assistant

J. Nicol 6/2/59 to 2/12/60 Machinist

C. Jeffries 17/8/59 to 17/8/62 Fitter

A. Pride 15/5/59 to 21/7/61 Draftsman

A. McGregor 5/6/59 to 5/6/60 Laboratory assistant 5/6/60 to 30/3/62 Fitter

A. Lak 12/6/59 to 16/3/62 Laboratory assistant

B. Corner 25/l/60 to closure Draftsman

M. Mullay 12/2/60 to 7/12/62 Apprentice machine shop

V. Brown 14/3/60 to 17/8/62 Draftsman

A. Sonter 23/5/60 to 30/3/62 Labourer

G. C. Ifield 20/6/60 to 28/7/61 Laboratory

J. Marshall 20/2/61 to 17/8/62 Machinist

W. Mullay 13/12/61 to closure Apprentice machinist

J. Byrne 13/12/61 to closure Replaced M. Joscelyne chief of machine shop.


I consider that my first career ended when I departed from England. I regard my second career as having started with the formation of Lucas Laboratories and as having ended with my retirement from full time service in my profession. In 1963, I began a spare time study about matters quite unrelated to my profession and I now regard that as being in preparation for what I refer to as my third career.

I have always been aware that my inventive inspirations are from some source beyond my conscious brain. Those of my senior colleagues who were aware of my limited education, referred to my inventive inspirations as an engineering 'instinct', or 'intuition', which are only other names for 'ESP' or a responsiveness to intangible thoughts and recently I learned that the thoughts which inspired me were those of a knowledgeable free spirit, who I refer to as my spiritual tutor.

Although I am responsive to these thoughts, I am not a psychic person and I had always been sceptical of the reported psychic experiences of others, until I had personal experiences of psychic phenomena over a period of about eight years, beginning in 1949, shortly after the death of Oliver Lucas and ending abruptly with the death of our son Philip.

I had no further psychic experiences of that type, but a few years later, I began to respond to an inspiration to make an exhaustive study of human characteristics, based on human instincts for the survival of their species in primitive times and on the changes resulting from living within large settled communities. Because this was only a spare time study, it extended over about eleven years until my retirement from full time service in my profession.

I began these studies rather unwillingly, because they were unlikely to yield any financial rewards, but I became more interested with the accumulation of inspired information, through which I gained increased wisdom in my understanding of my fellow humans, of both sexes and from all walks of life.

Following my retirement from active engagement in my profession, I began to be inspired with information about spiritual matters and I have recorded this in book entitled 'Intelligences and their humans', which I intend to publish. If this book is reasonably well received, I intend to publish the results of my previous studies, revised where necessary to conform with the more recent teachings. It is unimportant to me whether or not this third career becomes a profitable one, I feel that I must respond to the guidance of my tutor in this matter, as I have done throughout my adult life in matters affecting my previous careers.

My previous profession has now become only a pleasurable spare time diversion from the work associated with my third career, but I continue to have new inventive ideas, although I doubt that any of these will be developed in my lifetime.

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